SCFI FestivalsSociety for the Confluence of Festivals in India

Holi in Rajasthan

The colourful state of Rajasthan plays Holi much the same way as Mathura. A night before the full moon, crowds of people gather together and light huge bonfires to burn the residual dried leaves and twigs of the winter. People throw coloured water and powders (gulal and kumkum) at each other and make merry. Singing, dancing and the traditional beats of dhol add to the gaiety of the occasion.

Celebrations by Royals

On this day even the royals of Rajasthan don a festive spirit and mingle with the commoners. Infact, royal courts all over North India have refined the festival into an art. Rajput warriors of the Rajasthani courts used to show off their equestrian skills during the festival. Even today, Rajput men would ride their steeds through the white and pink clouds of colour, throwing colour powders on each other. Even the members of the royal families are not immune from being drenched by colour.

Braj Mahotsav

The Braj Festival is held in honour of Lord Krishna a few days before Holi, in the month of March. The festival is marked by verve and zest. Villagers, in gay, multi hued attire, can be seen singing and performing the raslila depicting the immortal love-story of Radha and Krishna.

Folk Traditions in Rajasthan

Mali Holi : The colourful festival of Holi is played in many different ways. The 'mali' or gardener community of Rajasthan has a unique style where the men colour the women with water and women retaliate by hitting them with sticks or long pieces of cloth

Gair at Godaji: Men from 12 villages collect at Godaji village near Ajmer in Rajasthan to play gair a few days after holi. Each village brings his own drummer and gair troupes. The picturesque location for it is a valley surrounded by hills on all sides. Thousands of onlookers and close to hundred players make a wonderful sight and a fond memory.

Dolchi Holi at Bikaner: In Bikaner district, members of 'Harsh' and 'Vyas' communities have been celebrating Holi by throwing water at one another with force for the past more than 300 years. A specially designed vessel called 'dolchi' made from camel skin is used for the purpose. But the water is thrown only at the back of an individual.

More Info about Holi Festival

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